Meet our November Fish of the Month, the Sarcastic Fringehead (Neoclinus blanchardi!)
Survey Regions: Sarcastic Fringeheads are found in the north Pacific Ocean, throughout the coast of California as well as Baja California in Mexico. Check out the sightings report for this species for REEF's Pacific Coast (PAC) survey region.
Size: They can range from 3-8 inches, and can grow up to one foot long - that's pretty big for a member of the Blenny family!
Identifying Features: Sarcastic Fringeheads are brown to gray, with light blotches or bars. They have fringe-like cirri above their eyes, and two metallic blue spots ringed in yellow on the dorsal fin. They also have an extremely large mouth with uniquely-designed jaws that fan out to the sides, which they use to appear bigger and more intimidating.
Fun Facts: Sarcastic Fringeheads live among sandy and muddy buttoms along coastlines. They inhabit crevices, holes, empty shells, or even bottles and cans. No matter where they live, they are highly aggressive toward intruders and defend their territory ferociously - especially males, who vigorously guard egg masses. Click here to check out a video of two male Sarcastic Fringeheads battling for dominance.
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for the December issue of e-News to see our last Fish of the Month for this year!